Monday, February 27, 2012

Cold Cure

This post is about experiencing the cold, not catching a cold. (Personally I would rather deal with the latter.) I have a phobia about being cold, which really isn't a good feature since I live in Canada. I Googled to see if there is a term for people who are afraid of being cold and was surprised to see there is one. It is called Frigophobia. And no, I am not making that up. Although I think the site might not be entirely credible since it also listed gems such as Consecotaleophopia, which is the fear of chopsticks, and Hobophobia, the fear of bums or beggars.

Okay, so maybe there isn't a legitimate term for the fear of being cold, but that doesn't make it any less real. I don't mind going out into the cold as long as I am dressed for it. I think it is the reason I keep knitting sweaters. Practically speaking I don't need any more sweaters. Psychologically speaking I can't seem to stop knitting them. Ditto for socks.

My fear of being cold is not restricted to the daytime hours. Every night I heat up not one, but two rice bags in the microwave. These are not my main tool for warding off the cold though - that spot is reserved for my hot water bottle. It is my constant companion from roughly mid- November until mid-April.

I have wanted to knit a wool hot water bottle cover for ages, and had several fancy patterns in my Ravelry queue just waiting to be cast on my needles. They never seemed to make it to the top of my queue though, and I finally came to the realization I needed to lower my expectations and knit something practical. After all, it was a hot water bottle cover, not an elaborate cabled sweater I was planning to make. This is the Literary Hotties pattern from the book The Gentle Art of Knitting.


It was quick, it was easy, and best of all it keeps my hot water bottle warm all night long. The perfect cure for Frigophobia.

28 comments:

  1. Frigophobia, a funny name but not as hilarious as hobophobia, which is also just such fun to say. I share your fear of being cold, and only just bought a really warm coat last year....it made such a difference! It's my "grown up lady warm coat" because there's nothing cute about it, but warm trumps cute any [cold] day of the week. I like your hot water bottle cover!

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    1. I thought the hobophobia name was pretty funny too! I can't even guess at how one would pronounce the phobia for chopsticks though. :-)

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  2. I'm glad you have the things you need to keep warm and keep the Fridgophobia at bay. I'm the opposite, I'd rather be cold than have a cold. But I understand your feelings. I think my wife may have the same condition. It sometimes drives her to sit on the heat vent in our kitchen floor--it's the vent closest to the furnace. Also, we have lots of blankets and throws placed strategically around the house. I generate a lot of heat, so the blankets on the bed are routinely doubled over onto her side (and off of my side).

    I only know the phobias explained to Charlie Brown by Lucy, but I think my mom had hobophobia. She had a rule that if we saw men walking on the railroad tracks, we had to run in the house and lock the door. Now that I think of it, she had the same rule regarding Jehovah's Witnesses. Hmmm...

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    1. It sounds like you have the same thing going on at your house as we do at ours. The blankets are all doubled over on my side of the bed too!

      I can't believe there was really someone with hobophobia! :-)

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  3. I'm sitting beside the wood stove right now, and the thermometer on the wall reads 26C. I'm good with that. I have a hot water bottle upstairs, tucked into bed already, that was filled with BOILING water despite the dire warning on the bottle, "Do Not Fill With Boiling Water". Phooey! That hot water bottle is my saviour.

    All that to say, I feel your pain. Cold must be banished at all costs. Hope your new hot water bottle cover keeps the water boilin' all night long!

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    1. We used to have wood heat and I loved it. Once the fire got going in the morning I was warm for the rest of the day. I don't think I have been the same since we moved out of that house! :-) I might try your method of boiling the water before putting it in the hot water bottle. The dire warnings had always scared me enough I had avoided doing it.

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    2. If you can find it, the best brand to buy is "Faschy". Check on Amazon.com, they have a few models available. I bought mine in Germany, and I can't tell you how much I love it! For starters, the opening, well, it's not this puny little opening that sputters boiling water over your hand as it's filled! It's got to be a generous 1" in diameter and I can fill the bottle in seconds, no sputtering! I have no clue what kind of plastic it's molded from, but it's a really high-quality product that's manufactured in Germany. Like you, I use a hot water bottle from November to April, so it's definitely seen a lot of use. The next morning, the water is still unbelievably hot. Worth every penny, that Faschy!

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    3. Thanks for this! I am going to check it out on Amazon right now!

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  4. Looks so cosy. I have knitted a few hottie covers for other people but not for us yet - definitely on my to do list. By the way, I LOVE the colour - one of my favourites!

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    1. Thanks! The yarn is Cascade Eco and it was perfect for this project. I think I am going to be knitting up a couple of these as gifts come this holiday season. What pattern did you use?

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  5. I've always wanted a hot water bottle (secretly it's because I've wanted to knit a cover for it!) Great job on yours!

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    1. Thanks! You can usually find hot water bottles at the drug store. It is worth spending a couple dollars more and getting the best one they have. You should definitely get one so you can knit a cover and so you can stay warm!

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  6. Kristie,

    I love your hot water bottle's dress. I'm also using a bottle. I filled hot water before going to bed, and in the morning, I place it on the floor covered with my old fleece jacket. I'm typing while my feet are on it. Feel so good like hot spring. It's amazing how long the warm heat lasts.

    I love your puppy photos! I went back and read your old blog. On David's photo, I'm shocked that he is wearing a short sleeve shirt like summer! I feel cold looking at it. In fact, I'm about to sneeze! Maybe my home without using heater is colder than your home in lower than sub zero temperature.

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    1. That is a great idea to have it under your feet! As far as David and the short sleeve shirt, he has always been warm. There are winter days he goes out with just a lightweight hoodie. I am like you - I am always telling my kids when they aren't dressed warm enough that it makes me cold to look at them. :-)

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  7. I bet that is a real term...seems they have a word for every type of phobia nowadays! I don't fear the cold...but I don't like being cold. I haven't resorted to hot water bottles at night though (my husband is like a huge hot water bottle...he exudes heat). That said, I think your knitted cover is great and will do the job! I also love that you realized you had to lower expectations to get it done. We should all learn such a lesson...

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    1. But what about the fear of chopsticks? :-)

      I am not good at lowering expectations. This was an exception. If you look at my Ravelry queue you will know what I am talking about! :-)

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  8. I only hate the cold if I haven't dressed properly. then I'm just mad at myself. We now have a woodstove and I have barely used the afghan all winter. Of course, it's been a mild one. I've always been afraid of hot water bottles. (Is there a name for that?) Well, afraid they'll leak all over the bed.

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    1. I am always so incredibly jealous of people who have wood stoves. We used to have one and I think I have been cold ever since we moved from that house! And I have had one hot water bottle leak in the bed. That is when I learned a lesson. Don't buy a cheap hot water bottle. :-)

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  9. I'd like to hear more about "The Gentle Art of Knitting".

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    1. This was a library book Jean. I took it back as soon as I finished the hot water bottle cover so I am not going to be much help. I remember thinking I was glad I hadn't spent the money to buy the book, although it did have a couple of cute patterns in it.

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  10. I'm not sure I have a "fear" of being cold, but I sure hate it!! I've always had cold hands and feet, and I also spend lots of quality time with my microwaveable heating pad. And I have an electric heating pad that I use whenever I'm sitting in my spot on the sofa.

    But now that the arthritis is getting worse in my hands, I find that I'm dreading the cold even more because of the pain, so maybe I'm developing a real fear of the cold after all. Now where's my heating pad?....

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    1. I'm sorry to hear you have arthritis in your hands and feet. Maybe a hot water bottle would be worth trying out? I think it stays warm much longer than a bag heated in the microwave.

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    2. I think so. I just ordered one of the Fashy ones based on the comment by Shim Farm above.

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    3. I hope it works! I had a look at them and they look like great hot water bottles. I am very tempted to order one for myself.

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  11. It's heat that bothers me, not cold. Hot water bottles and knitted woollies mean I'm never too cold in winter but I need a cure for too hot in summer!

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    1. If it is the heat that bothers you, you would not want to live in Kamloops in the summer! It is a desert climate, and our summers are scorching. I feel like a lizard in the summer, soaking up as much heat as I can to get me through the long winters. :-)

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  12. Your suspicions are correct, she treated me differently. She jumped in to defend me when I didn't need the help, made a big fuss when I was sick, that sort of thing. It was sweet. My wife and I met her for lunch a few times on weekends. But it wasn't long before she retired and moved to Florida with her husband.

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    1. :-) I wonder who she took under her wing down in Florida!

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